Islamic State claims San Bernardino killers among their followers

RT FarooqThe Islamic State said Saturday that the husband-and-wife team who killed 14 people at a holiday party in San Bernardino, California were among its followers.

Currently, U.S. federal authorities are investigating whether the killings, which were perpetrated by U.S.-born Syed Rizwan Farook and his Pakistani wife Tashfeen Malik, were an act of terrorism. Amid this backdrop, the Islamic State announced in an online podcast that the couple was among their ranks, saying that “two followers” of the group unleashed an attack in San Bernardino.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation believes Farook, 28, and Malik, 27, may have been inspired by foreign militants, but there was no indication that they were affiliated with the Islamic State, or if the militant group knew of them. The two were killed in a subsequent police shootout.

Quotes attributed to President Barack Obama suggest that the FBI and local authorities have yet to come up with more proof that Farook and Malik were involved in organized terrorism. However, Obama was also quoted as saying that there are “several pieces” of evidence that suggest the killers were “radicalized” to violence. The President said in a radio address that if this were true, “it would underscore a threat we’ve been focused on for years, the danger of people succumbing to violent extremist ideologies.”

Should the San Bernardino attack be proven to have been a terrorist act driven by Islamist militants, it would mark the most deadly attack in America since the 9/11 attack of 2001.